Leaving Pollença early with a nice wind made us hopeful to have a great sail around the most northern point of Mallorca – a spectacular sight with its enormous high mountains and perpendicular cliffs! The sails went up (only the genoa though – due to expected strong winds) and although the sea was pretty rough, it was nothing we were not used to at times. That was until we reached the very northern tip of the island – Cap Formentor! (It certainly lives up to its name!).There was a fairly sizable sloop (sailing yacht) just ahead of us as the waves suddenly became quite scary and steep turning the sea into a washing machine!
Four metre waves started pounding us right on the nose. Sails went down and we were watching the dinghy (that was lifted up as high as possible on the davits) taking in water with every steep wave we hit! The yacht ahead of us turned around and head back from where we came. For a few moments we were contemplating doing the same. I tried to take some pictures but often ended up with pictures of the roof or the deck instead of the sceneries around us! I was almost begging Johann to please continue for a while longer and see if conditions will improve as soon as we’ve rounded the corner of Cap Formentor. He was very reluctant – having to hand steered the boat in conditions like this is taking a lot of concentration and is tiresome and there was just no way that I could take over from him! In fact – I often went inside just to avoid seeing the scary waves lifting the nose right up into the air and as we hit the top of the wave, the back of the boat was dipping so low that the dingy started “scooping” water! We kept going and after about an hour the waves dropped down slightly but it was not comfortable at all … yet (at least they are coming from one direction only). The struggle was worth the while because the northern coast is lined with enormous cliffs – much bigger than we have seen before on the island and it became very mountainous and lush. The sights were breathtaking!
The rebound waves from the cliffs made it impossible to get close to the shore let alone contemplating going into any of the spectacular calas we passed! After hours of motoring with waves now hitting us from the sides and causing uncomfortable rolling we could at last get closer to the island at the port of Sollér. We have been to this lovely town before and would not mind overnighting there if we could. The water in the harbour is indigo blue deep and the shallow patches are chockers with boats! Sollér will have to wait for another time. We kept going all the way to the island of Las Illites – only a few kilometres from Palma.
Illa de Las Illites was full of super yachts and half topless girls that normally is part and parcel of those big motor yachts. (A popular getaway from Palma for these big yachts) We found a very nice spot to anchorage and settled into the lovely blue water of this protected bay. Most of these motor yachts departed for their berths somewhere in Palma as soon as the sun started setting and the anchorage became quiet and much roomier. We went ashore for a drink and the best rollmops (as tapas). A very Dutch and German dish – not surprising though! German speaking visitors were everywhere! That seems to be a very popular island for them.
The next day we head back to Palma to pick up my sister (Lientjie) who will arrive the following day to stay with us for 3 weeks! I cannot wait! The excitement was huge! Most of my day went into cleaning the cabin (again) and tiding up (again and again) in anticipation for my special guest!
Palma with Lientjie meant shopping and visiting the Cathedral inside and show her the fresh food market : “Mercat municipal de Santa Catalina” – the best we’ve seen so far! The shopping was exhausting and we came back each night with sore feet and bags full of bags! Handbags and shoes are Palma’s thing! We could not get enough of it! The Cathedral was spectacular! The second highest cathedral in Europe and needless to say – it is impressive and absolutely fabulous! The morning before we left Palma, we have decided to attend the mass in the cathedral before going to the “Mercat”.
What a wonderful experience! Such was the markets! And the taking of photo’s of all the wonderful colours of fruit and veggies and the weird and wonderful seafood displays almost distract us from doing the shopping! We got back just in time to unpack the fresh food before the order from the captain came to drop the lines… we are leaving! I wonder if we will be back again?
Palma is special – very special indeed! To top the fair well, we ended up in the mid of a huge regatta in the bay of Palma and had brilliant photo opportunities of big yacht in full sail all around us!
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